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PKR moves to win back Jeffrey

KOTA KINABALU: PKR may be attempting to bring back into its fold maverick politician Jeffrey Kitingan who left the party early this year following his disillusion with the party’s top leadership.
FMT has learnt that a fresh effort to woo Jeffrey is on.

It is reliably learnt that PKR de facto leader Anwar Ibrahim has sent a three-member group of emissaries to meet the former PKR vice-president with a special message.

Insiders claimed that the embattled PKR supreme leader is sending his trusted friends, Michael Bong and David Yeoh, together with local PKR leader Christina Liew, for a rendezvous with Jeffrey. The meeting is most likely to be on March 4 here.

Efforts to get Jeffrey’s comments were met with silence, while Liew was non-committal. Her ambiguous reply text neither confirmed nor denied that such a move was in the works.

However, the secret meeting may now be rescheduled due to its exposure, said an insider.
PKR leaders in the know who requested anonymity, claimed that Anwar was prepared to agree to allow Jeffrey head Sabah PKR if that is what it takes to bring him back.

Jeffrey has not burnt his bridges with the opposition party and has maintained that post and position are not his priority.

He has insisted in the past that the PKR headquarters respect the independence of the state leadership and fulfil all the assurances, including autonomous power for Sabah and Sarawak as agreed prior to the formation of Malaysia Federation back in 1963.

PKR needs Jeffrey
Anwar, it is learnt, had not altogether accepted Jeffrey’s decision to quit the party on Jan 1. Anwar had also apparently not accepted Jeffrey’s earlier decision to step down from the vice-president’s post.

Liew, seen as a key ally of Jeffrey, also quit her supreme council post, only to be told that her resignation too was rejected by PKR.

The Kota Kinabalu division head is now back as a power-broker in the state PKR line-up, with the ejection of a reportedly anti-Jeffrey faction within the party led by Tuaran division head Ansari Abdullah.

Jeffrey is now heading United Borneo Front (UBF), a NGO fighting for a freer and autonomous Borneo states.

He is holding a seminar-cum-inter-party dialogue on Sabah problems on March 5 at Beverly Hotel here.

Meanwhile, Sabah Pakatan Rakyat secretariat will hold its convention on March 12, while PKR will hold its own state convention here on April 2.

Currently helmed by PKR president, Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, Sabah PKR is seen to be on the decline especially among the KadazanDusun Murut community, from which Jeffrey derived much of his clout and support.

Jeffrey’s exit from PKR and his newly-found friendship with the Dayak community in Sarawak via several inter-NGO liaisons and the resurgence of SNAP, has also affected Sarawak PKR in one way or another.

It’s all about money
Anwar and PKR leaders in both states, however, are worried that a split in votes among the opposition parties would result in the Barisan Nasional (BN) winning by default, as proven in few parliamentary and state seats in Sabah in the 2008 election.

They are eager to consolidate the position of the opposition parties and leaders in Sabah and Sarawak, given that both states contribute 57 parliamentary seats (including one in Labuan) and will decide if BN or Pakatan march to Putrajaya after the 13th general election.

Political analysts tracking Jeffrey’s development believe it would be unwise for him to move again.

One analyst said Jeffrey might be tempted to go back if Anwar made a sweeping written concessions on state autonomy.

“The question is whether the people will believe him or not… They now take Anwar’s words with a pinch of salt,” he said, adding that many in Sabah are sceptical about Anwar when it comes to democracy and state autonomy.

Meanwhile, a former senior Sabah PKR leader who requested anonymity claimed that many in Sabah PKR now have realised it cannot do without Jeffrey.

“But there are Umno Trojan horses in Sabah PKR, and there are traitors and stooges of Kuala Lumpur there, who would create issues even if Jeffrey is in and fights for the state…” he said.
When asked about this latest development, Jeffrey’s aides stressed that Jeffrey remained committed to his Borneo cause and would not return to PKR.


  1. Desperate is Anwar and PKR on Sabah now. Now you can understand what clout means.

  2. Unless jeffry has alternative, i dont see any wrong rejoining PKR but he must get Anwar agreed in written first on what sabahans and sarawakians want.

  3. That's why la.. Anwar and top PKR leadership under-estimated DDJK. Sabah PKR is strong because of him & the KDM support, but they always ignore him and have been appointing Muslims to head the Sabah PKR. He and the President don't listen to the grassroots but see us from a long distance, just like UMNO. If their attitude is like this and PR becomes the next gov't, their style of governing still same as what UMNO is doing now. So what is the use of following Anwar? Unless he LISTENS!!!

  4. For change to come, the two Borneo states(Sabah & Sarawak) desperately need fresh new politicians, with fresh ideas and determination, not those with expired shelf lives who don't seem to be able to get things done for decades.

    Why the attention on the earliest "katak" Jeffrey K again? The likes of JeffreyK must retire from politics which they are never good at! As for PKR/Anwar, just ignore them. Remember Pakatan Rakyat is made up of PAS and DAP also, go for them!

  5. ...too bad PKR started with the old game plan by all malaya-based party...control sabah n sarawak members by appointing someone for the respective state at their whim and fancy ... without real strenght so that they can "divide-and-rule" sabahan n sarawakian even within party sabahan and sarawakian are counted as voters only and not as equal "Malaysian" partners... i hope Jeffery and others alike to keep that position to carry on the Sabah-Sarawak spirit and individual who wont sell their soul for own glorification...


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